Homosexuality still remains to be one of the most controversial issues in the world today
Homosexuality still remains to be one of the most controversial issues in the world today. In the article, The Boys of Beaver Meadow. A Homosexual Community 1920s Dartmouth College, by Nicholas L. Syrett, aimed at finding out the factors of homosexuality in the community. A qualitative fact was found that homosexuality was not seen within a more rural setting. Indeed, just as much fun could be had in the country as in the city, and, even more importantly for middle class college students (Syrett, 2007). This article is set in the 1920’s in New England and is based upon the masculinity of men in that era. In reaction, the conceptions of masculinity helped examine masculinity in a single sex environment in comparison to coeducational schools and how they may differ from one another. In addition, the top of the article explores how homosocial and rural factors contributed to the growth of Beaver Meadow, a homosexual community. Before the early 1920’s the issue of homosexuality was not in the public domain until recently after a group of Dartmouth college students purchased a farmhouse in Beaver Meadow where they spent majority of their free time, playing games, drinking and performing sexual acts. In reaction to the farmhouse, throughout school, college and theatre programs, there were always glowing reviews which permit same-sex relationships (Syrett, 2007). They asserted that homosexuality was mostly seen in members of fraternity’s such as Epilson Kappa Phi, also known as EKP. Since the fraternity’s, letters were written to faculty advisors to be aware of an “unpleasant atmosphere” which surrounded the fraternity. There had been harsh consequences such an being expelled for those who violated any of the rules of the fraternity and they were to reframe from any activity which may be misrepresented as effeminacy (Syrett, 2007). Effeminacy is the manifestation of traits in a boy or main that are more often associated with feminine nature, belabour or gender roles (Syrett, 2007). These letters to the faculty were aimed at condemning factors of homosexuality in Beaver Meadow. This behaviour also aimed at importing women to play the female parts in plays and by 1929, drag in Dartmouth had been eliminated from the stage as a whole (Syrett, 2007). A discussion on how criminalization of homosexuality violates human rights in the Dartmouth context was also central to this article. The research concluded that the boys attending Beaver Meadow serves not just an understanding of gay identities rural environments but in search of many more undiscovered stories across the word. Further, by looking at fraternities, it is possible to get a sense of how broad issues around acceptance, exclusion and sexual diversity are being played out at the local level in New England.
This articles thesis is based upon rules fraternity men failed to abide by to represent their definition of masculinity to become more accepted as a whole. The author wanted readers to take away the idea that masculinity differed from fraternity men in terms of their own masculinity, some by choice, others by circumstance. The approach to the subject was formed in chronological order. The author covers the subject of homosexuality adequately by explaining the factors on how college, fraternity brotherhood and women’s parts in school plays is strongly connected to the conceptions of masculinity in 1920 (Syrett, 2007). Nicholas Syrett covers all aspects of the subject in a balanced fashioned way. He was not bias by the fact that in this specific ere, the visibility of openly gay characters or role playing as a feminine character was accepted especially in schools. Certain aspects of theoretical framework were used by the author such as class and gender. Syrett mentioned how homosexuality was a way for middle class men to past time. The gender of being male also played a huge important factor in this article because men were forced to hide their preferences and to blend in with the heterosexual patrons. Syrett implemented this framework by attaching the prohibition of drinking to effeminacy. Furthermore, this article helped the reader understand the subject more because homosexual behaviour became the primary basis for the labeling and self-identification of men as ‘gay’. Going back before 1920’s, homosexuality was essentially a sin. Majority of men were only labelled if they displayed a gender status they weren’t by assuming the sexual and other cultural roles during that time period. This shapes the authors argument because the definition of masculinity changed throughout the world. Men are now portrayed as people who are completely different then in the 1920’s. The structure of the argument makes sense and is persuading because the author tends to bring awareness to the homosexuality community. Syrett supports his arguments by using convincing evidence of how domestic and external factors help explain the rural investigation of homosexuals during college. Before the faculty advisors turned its attention to the matter in the late 1925’s, they had adopted producers which facilitated the later female role theatre parts. In addition to removing any behaviour of appeal for possible homosexuals, allowed the college to widen its investigation without concern over public criticism. The emphasis on character weakness such as the prohibition of alcoholism established the precedent and investigative tactics for the “fun” homosexual purges. As evidenced by this study, considerable differences of opinion characterized the decision of handling of homosexuality.
To conclude, the article provided a meaningful contribution to the overall understanding of the subject of homosexuality by emphasizing the desire to live an open life, the need to live with integrity, and the hope to be accepted is a daily struggle in most countries in the world. They are a few strengths that tied everything together, A review of this kind, aiming at an examination of rural and homosocial, single sex environment in comparison to coeducational schools can impact homosexuality. The review in its current form addresses some of these issues and contributes to providing a better understanding on these concepts and the analysis of the homosexuality impact began to become open since the early 1920’s . In fact, surprisingly early developments receive more attention/are more reacted to. Equally important are the weaknesses. Throughout the article, it failed to show that by bringing females in to play feminine roles and eliminating drag in Dartmouth, it did not alleviate problems they thought drag and homosexuality was responsible for. Males still continued to engage and act in an “unpleasant atmosphere”. Males were still resilient towards the rules that were put in place by faculty advisors. Homosexuality never went away, regardless of the laws and the acts put in place, it continuously still happened around the world finally leading same-sex marriages to be legal In some countries. Another weakness from the article was even though the review is restricted to New England, it would have been worthwhile to mention other countries or the history of homosexuality before and how it has evolved. In conclusion, research is needed to better understand how to define sexual orientation in general and homosexuality orientation in particular and to better understand the diversity of the LGBT population to get a sense of how broad issues around acceptance, exclusion and sexual diversity are across numerous countries.